Recipe: Rotisserie Turkey

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Three turkey thighs, with skin, on the bone. About 1.5 kilos.  I’m making three because of feeding teens and wanting leftovers. My theory is cook once eat twice.  Hopefully the teens will leave some leftovers.  Preheat the oven to a hot oven.


freshly-squeezed juice of half a juicy lemon

a couple tablespoons of  olive oil

a couple tablespoons (total) of some poultry spices: black pepper, dry mustard, salt, coriander, thyme, marjoram, sage, parsley.

Procedure: mix up the marinade/basting sauce.   Let the turkey sit in the marinade for a while. All afternoon if you thought about it in advance. A few minutes while the oven heats up if you sat on the couch reading a book, like I did, on endurance training for athletes.

I am using my oven’s spit rotisserie.  Here is  very nicely-photographed explanation for trussing the meat.  My best friend Julia Child recommends  smearing butter on the skin and using twine to secure a layer of bacon over the meat. It’s a good idea, but I don’t have any twine. So I haven’t “barded” the meat with bacon either. I’ve done that before and it’s delicious.  I’m using small skewers to pin the thighs around the rotisserie.

When is it done? Julia says roasting a whole chicken takes 45 minutes plus 7 minutes per pound.  To be safe, she recommends adding a buffer of between 10 to 30 minutes.  The  rotisserie instructions I linked above say “check your user’s manual” and that the bird pictured below takes two hours.  I use a meat thermometer and will start checking the thighs after about 45 minutes.  The thickest part of the thigh is fully cooked at 175 degrees F.  The temperature will continue to rise after the turkey has been removed from the oven.

The meat will brown as it cooks.  (Sorry, I couldn’t resist including  the animated chicken.)  Since I will be in the kitchen making side dishes, it will be easy enough to check. Besides, a delicious smell will tell me when the food is just right.

If you don’t have a rotisserie in your oven, dig out your Thanksgiving recipes and roast the thighs in a pan until done.

UPDATED: the turkey was done in an hour.

For side dishes: raw cucumbers, peppers and tiny grape tomatoes with Caesar dressing for dipping.  Barely cooked melange of carrots, cauliflower and broccoli.  Red chard sauteed with bacon pieces.


2 responses »

  1. your friend julia also manhandles the raw-whole chicken and then adjusts her eye glasses without washing her hand first. i nearly died.

    • When?! Eeeew. I wash my hands so often while cooking that my skin gets chapped. And I never let the done touch anything that was raw.


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